5 Ways to Build Stronger Legs Using Tai Chi Exercises

As Tai Chi Master Cheng Man Ching is famous for saying, “Tai Chi Chuan, the great ultimate, strengthens the weak, raises the sick, invigorates the debilitated, and encourages the timid.”

I believe that many of these benefits come from building stronger legs. Not only do these exercises solve the obvious physical problems that come from weak legs, but when you feel more stable, planted, and connected to the earth, you get a major boost of confidence, self-assurance, and drive.

Here are 5 different exercises I do to build stronger legs:

  1. The Taoist Spine Stretch — Do your spine stretch with a specific emphasis on releasing down the legs into the earth and staying connected to the feet during the rising phase.
  2. Tai Chi Cat Walking — In Tai Chi Cat Walking, you do single leg squatting, but you can also track yin and yang lengthening up and down the legs.
  3. Rooted Shifting — In this shifting exercise, without letting the hips pop up, slide back and forth to work your leg alignments.
  4. Super Slow Squats — In these squats, you need to breath through the burning, shaking, and muscular tension to find smooth, coordinated joint and bone movement, while avoiding any joint pain from misalignment.
  5. Long Standing Qigong Sessions — Even if you start in a high stance, with the arms in the air you will have to keep finding new ways to support yourself and this builds lots of little connections into the body, from many different vectors that are hard to find otherwise.

Try them out and let me know what you think:

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  1. Deborah Fortson says:

    Great post on legs, Dan. Thanks.
    Hope the course on infant development is going well!

    (no need to reply, no time, I know)